For small businesses, you know just how important each and every customer is to your success. You also know that the experience of one customer can lead to new customers, and that’s the exact reason you should take the time to show each customer just how important they are to you. Here are 5 ways to show your small business customers some love.
#1: Give a Sincere “Thank You.”
The beauty is in it’s simplicity. Each time a new or return customer comes through your door, you have an opportunity to make their experience great. Much of this will rely on your product or service, but your (or your employees’) attitude or demeanor also weighs heavily on whether that customer will ever return. So, start small when showing your love and give a sincere “Thank you for stopping by! I hope you enjoy the rest of your day and come back to see us soon.” each time a customer leaves your store.
#2: Surprise Them With Something Free
It doesn’t have to be something huge or something expensive. I’m not suggesting you cut into your profits. Anything small, maybe a cup of coffee with their meal, half of a sushi roll (my favorite sushi place does this), an extra cupcake with an order of a dozen – you get the point. There’s no need to advertise that you are doing this, or even mention to the customer before the fact, just let it be a surprise, and let them know you appreciate their business.
#3: Create Something Personalized
When something is made JUST for you, it makes it that much more special and sincere. Creating something personalized to your customer, be it a handwritten note, a message on Facebook, a cheesy e-card, or something a little more involved liked Dell’s #DellLove series makes customers feel special and appreciated. The time you take to create something personal will not go un-noticed. Check out the reply I received from Dell after tweeting about one of their laptops from my personal Twitter account.
#4: Invite Them to an Exclusive Event
In an article on HelpScout.net, “25 Ways To Thank Your Customers“, author Gregory Ciotti suggests you throw a party for your customers. You can either handpick your customers – maybe your biggest or most loyal clients – or hand out invitations to anyone who will take one. Invite them out for a happy hour with drinks on you, a catered luncheon with a guest speaker, or a complimentary networking event. Letting them know that you appreciate them and value the relationship that you have with them enough to give them an invite to an exclusive event will go a long way in turning them into an advocate of your small business.
#5: Publicly Recognize Them
Deep down, who doesn’t love a little bit of recognition? Though your customers probably aren’t coming into your small business to earn recognition, I’m sure they would be thrilled to receive it. Maybe you could start a “Customer of the Week Newsletter” where you highlight someone who supported your business and who left a lasting impression on you. Or, it could be something as simple as sending a random tweet. Whatever it may be, that customer is sure to share with their friends and family. More customers for you!
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